September 27, 2007

"I am a dating disaster."

Says Abby Ellin, who hired a "dating coach" to get over this attitude:
The thought of meeting a stranger, sitting through a drink or meal, trying to be clever, makes me cranky. Think about the books that could be read while the other person drones on about his as-yet-unfinished divorce. Imagine the films that could be watched while he confuses the word “anecdote” with “antidote.” What a colossal waste of time.

More than one friend recommended an attitude adjustment.

“People can sense your intolerance,” they said. “They can smell negativity.”
Think about the books that could be read... think about all the Style section articles that can be written.

By the way, the dating coach will want you to pay her $500 and to devote 15 hours a week to the project. You'd think someone who starts with a bad attitude would have a bad attitude about that.
[The dating coach] instructs women to turn on their “cab light.” “You know how you know when a cab is free because the light is on?” she asked. “That’s what you need to do with dating. You have to be in the game.”
So that's what this is about.

52 comments:

MadisonMan said...

trying to be clever,

Why bother changing yourself for a date if you're shopping around for a soul mate to spend your life with? Are you going to change yourself for all time? No. So if you're not clever, don't try to be. People can smell falseness as well as negativity.

Pogo said...

Sartre's famous line, "Hell is other people" describes quite well the attitude of Abby Ellin, as gleaned from her first paragraphs.

I never did get quite why she wants to date; it seems to be a necessary evil, like eating brussel sprouts, or flossing. What exactly does she want out of dating anyway, when the films, friends, books, and travel already appear to meet her needs?

Seriously, what's the point?

John said...

The sense of entitlement among a certain group of upper middle and upper class white women is just amazing. This woman strikes me as one of those women who thinks that the perfect man should appear in front of her and fall to her feet. These sorts of women set rediculous standards. The man must be good looking, successful (because all upper class white girls are entitled to the large house in the fashionable city two children and a foreign born slave to raise them), and hold all of the right opinions. I used to run into these kinds of women when I was single. You would get one or two dates with them until they realized your apartment wasn't big enough or you bought your suits at the wrong store or you had some politically incorect opinon and then that was it.

The problem is that no one is perfect. So no one ever meets their standards. Instead, only the biggest philandering bullshit artists ever get past the second date. Honest decent guys don't make the cut because they are not underhanded enough to do the lying necessary to stay in the game. Inevietably these kinds of women end up married to or in long term relationships with complete slugs who lie to them, cheat on them and take advantage of them. After being burned these women never think "hey maybe I should date a differnt kind of guy and not have so many shallow requirements". The reaction is instead, "all men are pigs, I need to be really careful next time" and cycle starts all over.

The Drill SGT said...

Bet Ann loved the coach with this comment to her client: Ms. Spina is quick to disagree with his choices. Sometimes he’ll see someone attractive, he said, and usually she is curvy, with big, blonde hair. “Ranee will say, ‘Does she look like an intellectual person?’”

Ann Althouse said...

"until they realized your apartment wasn't big enough or you bought your suits at the wrong store or you had some politically incorect opinon ..."

You'll get rejected for the spelling too...

John said...

"You'll get rejected for the spelling too..."

Perhaps so Ann. After all, no one could ever be married to a bad speller. I generally rejected women for lack of math skills and lack on knowledge of 14th Century English and French nobility. If you couldn't do long division or know what line of Plantagenets (the Lancastrian) was founded by John of Gaunt, you were toast.

Ron said...

Every cab I get into its, "No, no, no, I don't go to Newark!" or "I don't go to Queens!"...storyofmylifeItellya!

Kev said...

How does the old joke go? 'I never photograph well.' 'Maybe you're just ugly.'

If you're not a good date, maybe you're just not a pleasant person. Why does it always have to be someone else's fault?

Gustavus said...

"You'll get rejected for the spelling too..."

That's rediculous.

John said...

"Think about the books that could be read while the other person drones on about his as-yet-unfinished divorce.Imagine the films that could be watched while he confuses the word “anecdote” with “antidote.” What a colossal waste of time."

I wonder if this woman is half as smart as she apparently thinks she is. I find that you can generally learn something from most people if you bother to engage them and listen to what they have to say. Also I wonder if there isn't some over compensation going on here. I have known a lot of really smart people in my life and the smartest ones never seemed to talk about how all the books they read. It never occurs to them. Reading and thinking is just a way of being. They don't know any other way.

John said...

The sense of entitlement among a certain group of upper middle and upper class white women is just amazing. This woman strikes me as one of those women who thinks that the perfect man should appear in front of her and fall to her feet. These sorts of women set ridiculous standards. The man must be good looking, successful (because all upper class white girls are entitled to the large house in the fashionable city two children and a foreign born slave to raise them), and hold all of the right opinions. I used to run into these kinds of women when I was single. You would get one or two dates with them until they realized your apartment wasn't big enough or you bought your suits at the wrong store or you had some politically incorrect opinion and then that was it.

The problem is that no one is perfect. So no one ever meets their standards. Instead, only the biggest philandering bullshit artists ever get past the second date. Honest decent guys don't make the cut because they are not underhanded enough to do the lying necessary to stay in the game. Inevitably these kinds of women end up married to or in long term relationships with complete slugs who lie to them, cheat on them and take advantage of them. After being burned these women never think "hey maybe I should date a different kind of guy and not have so many shallow requirements". The reaction is instead, "all men are pigs, I need to be really careful next time" and the cycle starts all over.

There you are Ann. I fixed it. I hope you feel better now.

Bruce Hayden said...

I think that it is getting harder for women to find a guy. Women are graduating from college at a slightly higher rate than men, and maybe the same rate for medical and law schools. Yet, women typically try to marry up, and many men still don't like marrying up. Add to that the "starter marriage" theory that some women have that we were talking about last week somewhere, where men are getting scared off.

So, on the one hand, you have a number of women getting squeezed with not that many available acceptable guys. On the other, their biological clocks are running.

I agree with the entitlement idea, except that thse women have to understand that the odds are against them. At the higher quality levels, there are probably as many, if not more, women than men. And since men can and often do marry down, it is the women who are in the bind.

John said...

"And since men can and often do marry down, it is the women who are in the bind."

Definitely if you are physically unattractive. But a lot of the women who seem to do the most whining about this are pretty attractive and get dates. I bet Abby is nice looking. My experience that when a woman is smart, good looking and single past the age of 30 or so, it is because she has ridiculous standards.

Paul Snively said...

From the end of the article: "The problem was me. Instead of devoting 15 hours to finding love, I gave it about 5. I was working, seeing my friends, traveling. In other words: I was busy."

"The problem was me. Instead of devoting 15 hours to finding love, I gave it about 5. I was working, seeing my friends, traveling. In other words: I don't want an intimate relationship with a man."

Fixed.

Bob said...

Ever see the Star Trek: Voyager episode where Captain Janeway, a prisoner of her lonely command and unable ethically to date any of her crewmen, resorts to the Holodeck for a holographic lover, whom she programs to her specific requirements, even the best height to embrace her?

That's what we all want, when it comes down to it. A love doll/companion that is totally of our choosing, and who can be dismissed with a single command, ready to reappear when the need strikes again.

LarsPorsena said...

$500 an hour for a dating coach!!!
I only charge $250 (plus expenses) an hour as a very accomplished gigolo er.. I mean male companion.

John said...

"I gave it about 5. I was working, seeing my friends, traveling. In other words: I was busy."


Of course I bet she expected him to devote all of his attentions to her and be there whenever she needed him. Gee, I wonder why no one is lining up to volunteer for that job?

Pogo said...

John,
I think Althouse's jibe about spelling was a joke that played up the very aspects you were complaining about; anyway it made me laugh.

John said...

"I think Althouse's jibe about spelling was a joke that played up the very aspects you were complaining about; anyway it made me laugh."

I know and it made me laugh to. Sorry if I sounded defensive.

Trooper York said...

At the Althouse get together at Pete's I had a conversation with one of the attendee's about a woman who was reading a book at the bar. Attempting to cause mischief, I egged on said attendee to come with up to the bar with me and engage in some badinage and frippery. Since I am married I am no longer in the game, but I still can coach. In my vast and extensive experience, the very best woman to approach in a bar is the one who is ostentatiously reading. That a sure sign that she can't wait to get the party started if you play your cards right. In love, as in real estate, you just have to be ready to close the deal.

Pogo said...

Trooper,

That's funny. I am married, but when I travel I like to get out and listen to music and have a nice dinner. Trying to avoid the awkwardness of being alone, I always bring a book (and a pen, to jot in the margins).

Over time I came to notice that people always left me completely alone whenver I had a book with me. It was like some kind of invisibility shield. Useful, if one wishes to avoid temptation, or at least not look like a player.

But now you have unnerved me, because it may in fact be that I really am invisible. That explains a hell of alot, especially the poor service.

Trooper York said...

But Pogo, you are a guy so when you are reading at the bar, you are just another nerd. But when a chick is reading at the bar, with a half empty glass for an hour, constantly looking around the room and making eye contact, it is an invitation to conversation. Trust me it's true.

Maxine Weiss said...

"The sense of entitlement among a certain group of upper middle and upper class white women is just amazing. This woman strikes me as one of those women who thinks that the perfect man should appear in front of her and fall to her feet."---John

And, they're lurking in Human Resources, and Personnel Departments, everywhere.

When a man goes to apply for a job, he'd better be ready to perform!

Ditch the earring, Mister. She won't say anything, but you can best bet, it annoys her!

Trooper York said...

The hardest part in picking up someone in a bar is moving seamlessly into conversation. The book serves as a useful prop and also as a safety valve. You can start up a conversation about that book, or your favorite book, or books in general, or how the judge just threw the book at you and she can respond or simply smile demurely and go back to reading. It’s a surefire conversation starter and a good way to kill it, based on her reaction to you. But it's usually a great sign of fun times.

Maxine Weiss said...

Trooper, I thought you were dating Doyle.

Beware: Doyle has expressed a tinge of racism, whenever we talk about Condi Rice, and his select use of racial epithets towards her in prior posts.

I'm sure you can educate him, though---tell him Abraham Lincoln was a Republican etc etc

halojones-fan said...

"I think that it is getting harder for women to find a guy..."

Manure. There are plenty of decent guys out there; but they aren't super-rich, they aren't mega-hotties, and they aren't tall. As you say, it's all about the standards, and women have been told for the last thirty years that their standards ought to be high.

Trooper York said...

Now, now Maxine don’t be jealous. We are just baseball fans on the opposite sides of the great divide. I can be friendly with someone who is so foolish and misinformed and so utterly clueless. But that's a Met fan for you. I want to extend my hand across the vast gap between us so that so day he might see the light. Don’t you have to go feed your flying monkeys?

Pogo said...

Trooper,
Damn. I thought maybe I could turn invisible.

Now I have to cancel my plans for next week.

Trooper York said...

Pogo, I can help you be invisible. When you get to bar, wear a big pair of coke bottle glasses with a band aid holding the together and set up a collection of Star War's action figures in front of you. I guarantee that no one will bother you.

Zeb Quinn said...

Yet another variation of looking for love in all the wrong places.

Pogo said...

Trooper
It's like you're standing right in front of me.
Weird.

Trooper York said...

I think I got a measure of the readership at the blog-a-thon, just buck up little soldier. Lucky for us, we are both married and are out of the game. I just hate to sit back when I see runners in scoring position flub their chance. What can you do? (P.S. I know you're full of it. You really have Battlestar Gallactica action figures).

stoqboy said...

Coke bottle glasses and star wars figurines will likely make you highly visible but completely unapproachable. Unless you are spotted by a fellow contestant on Beauty and the Geek.

John said...

I would guess that if you are a women and even have fair to midland looks and you appeared with the coke bottle glasses and the star wars figurines, that you would have a line of geeky men looking to make all of their dreams come true. I doubt you would be invisible. Be ware of course becasue while the odds in that situation are very good, the good are going to be very odd

Pogo said...

So it's not true that if Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) came into the bar and saw my little display of Star Trek figurines she'd become putty in my hands?

My whole life has been wasted.
Wasted!

ricpic said...

Well, maybe she should limit her candidates for dating to members of MENSA.

Maxine Weiss said...

Trooper: I don't have jungle fever, but I do like The Jeffersons, Good Times, What's Happening, Room 227.....very very much.

As for Doyle, all I can say is--- if these were slave times, Doyle would've made a very good "Massa" .

Love, Maxine

Mortimer Brezny said...

Her problem is likely that she's a filthy racist. I bet there is a nice black janitor or Hispanic doorman who will turn that frown upside down. But she doesn't consider them men. Pine away for Pete Sampras, lady! Pine away!

Trooper York said...

Pogo, dude you need Star Trek action figures not Star Wars. We might have to revoke your nerd membership card. But if you're really interested, Luckyoldson can help you get a Seven of Nine Blow up Doll in stain resistant latex, just email him for the details.

Pogo said...

Damn, Trooper, yer killin' me.

Trooper York said...

This is Gregoriava from Bulgaria....I saw her snatch this morning and it was amazing."
(Pat Glenn - Weightlifting commentator)

Trooper York said...

Ok, I know that quote doesn't make sense, but I found it this morning and I couldn't wait to post it. It does have something to do with dating, don't ya think.

former law student said...

I thought the story had a very happy ending. No man had to suffer from her intolerance and negativity, and she was free to prioritize her work, friends, and "travel" over meeting a guy.

Hey said...

Life is far more enjoyable and productive when you are single. Forget dating, forget the opposite sex, and just enjoy life,

If you really want to get married, find someone of the sex you are interested in whom you don't like, and buy them a house. Far, far easier!

Bissage said...

Hey,

in New Jersey, even if one doesn't really want to get married, that's still pretty good advice.

Just ask Governor Jon Corzine.

Prosecutorial Indiscretion said...

Trooper - I laughed.

Anyway, depending on where you live, there might be a shortage of good guys. The ratio in DC, for instance, is pretty skewed, and on top of that a significant number of DC guys are not interested in the ladies. I have bucked the odds, however, and led a fairly disastrous dating life since I moved to the city. But I'm willing to admit that probably 90% of my trouble is my own fault.

former law student said...

The constant influx of college-educated women makes DC a paradise for guys. An acquaintance of mine got married to a 30 year old when he was over 50.

Trooper York said...

Prosecutorial Indiscretion, don't give up. I found the love of my live very late after a long search. It's never too late, but you have to put yourself out there and try and try again.

Prosecutorial Indiscretion said...

Thanks - I'm working on it. This work/life balance thing is kind of crazy, but at some point the urge to fall in love and reproduce takes priority over the urge to put bad people in jail.

Trooper York said...

Believe it not the internet might be the place to meet someone. That's how I did it, you just have to keep in there swinging away. Sort of like Wade Boggs on Valium. I once saw him foul off seventeen straight pitches until he connected. Good Luck.

jiG² said...

Thats so true! People can instantly catch a vibe. Though, its so hard to find someone who can be a perfect match.
People are around you but you just can't connect...

chris said...

Let me put it to you this way, do you want to have kids? ( If so... good god I feel sorry for you!) If not.... then why bother with dating? There so many women out there that want you to do things for them... but things for them, the times have changed and women can do so many things for them selves... my suggestion is... LET THEM!
There is absolutely nothing outside of sexual pleasure that a woman can provide to me that I cant provide for myself... and even in that department it is most often less hassle to provide that for myself as well! It has taken me many years of dating and dealing with the bullshit of the dating world... to realize... that I really don't want anyone in my life.... I am quite content on my own. I no longer need, nor do I want a woman in my life for longer than a few hours here or there.

The LAST thing I would ever do is bring a child into the world... so I got myself snipped several years ago and don't have to worry about an accident happening. I have a very full life of leisure and don't even have to work anymore. I wake each day... do as I please... go where I please, and trust me... it is extremely gratifying!!

So for those of you out there who are desperately searching for a mate... or someone to date... take my advice... don't bother!! Its really not worth the hassle! What exactly are you searching for anyway? Someone to make you feel better aobut yourself? Or perhaps someone to " share life with" lol! When you learn to be content with yourself, and do for yourself, you will realize that you not only don't need anyone to be with you to be happy and survive in life... you will DEFINATELY have a lot less stress!